Feeds

Evidence of ancient WORLD SMASHER planet Theia - FOUND ON MOON

Apollo rock samples confirm even the name, claim boffins

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

Traces of mysterious planet Theia have been found on the surface of Earth's Moon.

Boffins have analysed samples of rock brought back by Apollo astronauts, and claimed they contain bits of another world. The discovery appears to back up the theory that the Moon was formed when Theia slammed into Earth some 4.5 billion years ago.

Lead researcher Dr Daniel Herwartz, from the University of Goettingen, said that people were beginning to doubt the prevailing theory.

"It was getting to the stage where some people were suggesting that the collision had not taken place," he told the BBC.

"But we have now discovered small differences between the Earth and the Moon. This confirms the giant impact hypothesis."

To confirm the theory, Dr Herwartz analysed the isotopes of the oxygen in the moon rocks, which serves as a sort of fingerprint. A meteorite, for instance, shows a markedly different ratio of oxygen isotopes than rock from the earth.

The doc and his colleagues have published their research in hefty boffnry mag Science.

They write:

The Moon was probably formed by a catastrophic collision of the proto-Earth with a planetesimal named Theia.

However, the rocks from Theia look to be fairly similar to that of the earth, which has baffled other scientists.

Dr Mahesh Anand from The Open University said the research was "exciting" but urged caution.

"We have to be cautious about representativeness of these rocks of the entire Moon, and so further analysis of a variety of lunar rocks is required for further confirmation," he said. ®

Eight steps to building an HP BladeSystem

More from The Register

next story
Malaysian Airlines flight MH17 claimed lives of HIV/AIDS cure scientists
Researchers, advocates, health workers among those on shot-down plane
Forty-five years ago: FOOTPRINTS FOUND ON MOON
NASA won't be back any time soon, sadly
Mwa-ha-ha-ha! Eccentric billionaire Musk gets his PRIVATE SPACEPORT
In the Lone Star State, perhaps appropriately enough
MARS NEEDS OCEANS to support life - and so do exoplanets
Just being in the Goldilocks zone doesn't mean there'll be anyone to eat the porridge
The Sun took a day off last week and made NO sunspots
Someone needs to get that lazy star cooking again before things get cold around here
Diary note: Pluto's close-up is a year from … now!
New Horizons is less than a year from the dwarf planet
Boffins discuss AI space program at hush-hush IARPA confab
IBM, MIT, plenty of others invited to fill Uncle Sam's spy toolchest, but where's Google?
prev story

Whitepapers

Seven Steps to Software Security
Seven practical steps you can begin to take today to secure your applications and prevent the damages a successful cyber-attack can cause.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.